Edited by Stephen Elstub and Oliver Escobar
Chapter 18: Journalists: the role of the media in democratic innovation
This chapter focuses on the relationship between media and democratic innovation. The few existing empirical investigations of this topic suggest that the level of attention of the media towards democratic innovations cannot be taken for granted, and that the quality of coverage is highly variable. This can be explained in light of the several structural factors that influence the mainstream media: media logic, concentrated ownership and commercialisation, some characteristics of the political system and the journalistic culture. Alternative journalistic movements, inspired by deliberative and participatory perspectives, appear to be promising for democratic innovation; however, they are minoritarian movements, and their impact on the media system is currently limited. Four complementary strategies are presented in the conclusion that could be pursued by policy makers, journalists and actors in the field of democratic innovation to enhance the level of attention of the media and the quality coverage of democratic innovation processes.
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